Interview: KIM KIM KIM
Who are you?
Hi I’m Kim Kim Kim
Is that your real name or artist name?
I changed my name when I came here, as Australian people couldn’t pronounce my Korean name. I needed to find something easy to say but I didn’t want to use a typical English name, so I choose to keep my last name. Despite Kim being the most common last name for Koreans, I decided to use it as it could help me to remember I’m just one amongst many other Kims – the others. This allows for a decentered notion of the self and is one of the basis’ of my work; how I relate to other people in an ongoing effort to emphasize with others.
Where were you born and where do you live now?
I was born in Washington D.C., U.S.A. and grew up in Seoul, South Korea.
Currently living and working in Perth, Western Australia.
How does where you live affect your art?
In terms of the location (including different cultures or relationships with different people) it doesn’t affect me, I’m just doing my work. But as I use local friends as models, I’d like to say that it affects my subject.
What materials do you use and how did you get started with them?
I’m a visual artist, mainly working with oil paint and pencil/conte/charcoal on paper.
My mom and her whole side of the family are artists; this family background influenced me a lot I guess.
Is there a running theme to the work you create, or do you just make what comes to your mind?
I wish to create works that speak with sincerity while focusing on the problems that effect each individual within my generation and at times even myself such as social anxiety, vanity and various other psychological problems that stem from the contemporary age. I work on different projects whenever I find an interesting subject that inspires me, but the main idea is based on the possible anxieties faced by individuals within the contemporary generation of youth.
What makes your work unique and truly your own?
My mark-making / colour palette / and the subject matter.
I don’t think my works are unique in this era though. I’m still in the process of developing my style.
What other budding artists do you love?
Nuestra is cool. And Ryan Boserio, joe42, Kuan Jia, Jaycy, ALEX, Owvbics, Abdul Abdullah, Ben Aitken, Tristan Pigott, Dario Puggioni,
Kwangho Shin, Eunsae Lee, Joel Kennedy, Sarah Endersby.
KIM KIM KIM in the hipflask office:
What kinds of ideas are you working on at the moment?
At the moment I’m experimenting materiality in (traditional) portrait area by mixing various mediums, photography and painting, and some new medias such as projector as the visual languages. I find that this mix of different mediums reflect the contemporary scene, also attempting to convey the image of contemporary youth; my generation, through this portrait project.
Tell us a little about your creative process.
Get ideas -> research/ collect the image resources -> refine the concept -> test the images through sketch or collage -> paint/draw -> refine heaps until I feel ok-> done! or leave it for a while.
How would you describe your style?
Don’t want to define it. ~_~
When can we see you next?
My solo show – “So Hollow, So Pure” opens on August 14 at Merenda Contemporary.
I also have 2 murals in the Little Wing Corner Gallery in Subiaco,
one in Double Double Small Bar (also in Subiaco), and one in the hipflask office.